Physical? Chemical? Mineral? Zinc? Broad-Spectrum? What’s the difference?

These days there are a myriad of sunscreens on the market. But which one is best for you? And how does it affect your acne? In honor of Skin Cancer Awareness month we felt the need to inform everyone of the benefits of sunscreen, why it’s important and which one is the best for your skin type. There are a few different sunscreen options and you should most defiantly know the differences.

Physical Sunscreens mean that they physically block your skin from UV rays. They will often use minerals such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. If your acne prone skin is sensitive, look for a sunscreen that uses mostly zinc oxide. Don’t be afraid of its “chalky-white” reputation. Many companies have developed “clear” zinc, which has made physical sunscreen more wearable than ever before.

Chemical sunscreens absorb UV rays. They are easily applied, with little to no appearance and a pleasing finish. You can recognize these sunscreens by their active ingredients: avobenzone and octinoxate, among others. Chemical sunscreens are not usually recommended for sensitive skin types.

You may have heard the term “broad-spectrum.” This refers to the UV rays, UVA and UVB. Your skin needs protection from both. A way to remember this is:

• UVA is responsible for Aging

• UVB causes Burning.

When shopping for a sunscreen, it’s always best to look for broad-spectrum coverage. Zinc oxide blocks both UVA and UVB rays which makes it an ideal choice. Chemical sunscreen formulas vary, but the label will state if it provides broad-spectrum protection, so be sure to keep an eye out for this.

Whether you choose a physical or a chemical sunscreen, be sure to apply it rain or shine, indoors or out, as the UV rays of the sun are able to penetrate clouds and windows.

For those of you battling blemishes, daily use of Face Reality sunscreens not only protects your skin from the damaging rays of the sun and maintains hydration; it also keeps those post-breakout marks from becoming a permanent fixture on your face. We offer a variety of different non-pore clogging sunscreens to suit your skin type and preferences.

Face Reality has sunscreens that all have different specs for each individual’s skin type. Are you using the one that’s best for you? Find out below!

If you have oily skin or spend a lot of time in the sun:

Face Reality Ultimate Protection Sunscreen SPF 28 – A physical sunblock that contains both Zinc Oxide and Titanium Dioxide, which provides broad spectrum coverage from harmful UVA and UVB rays. It also includes Allantoin which is soothing, moisturizing and promotes healthy cell renewal. This is an excellent choice for sensitive and rosacea skin types.

If you have normal/combination skin or dark skin:

Face Reality Daily SPF 30 Lotion – Our most lightweight sunscreen for daily sun protection. With no physical sunscreen added, this formula offers the least protection against UVA rays. However, its lightweight texture makes it a good choice for everyday wear. Women find it the most compatible with their makeup, and those with medium to dark skin tones will appreciate that this sunscreen does not appear pale upon application.

If you swim, play sports or are in the sun for extending periods of time:

SolRx Sunscreen SPF 44 – This sunscreen is a trusted choice of athletes and lifeguards for protection against harmful UVA and UVB rays. Originally designed for triathletes, swimmers and surfers, the SPF 44 Dry Zinc Sunscreen offers broad spectrum protection.

Hours of Operation

By Appointment Only
Text: 707-771-6599

Tuesday9:30AM - 5:30PM
Wednesday9:30AM - 5:30PM
Thursday9:30AM - 5:30PM
Friday9:30AM - 5:30PM
Saturday10:00AM - 4:00PM


*Acne and Non-acne treatments offered by appointment only. Reach Out By Calling